Title: POLICY STATEMENT--Policy Statement on Rules for Transaction of Business and Operational Responsibilities of the Farm Credit Administration Board [NV-94-05 (07-FEB-94)]
Issue Date: 04/13/1994
Agency: FCA
Federal Register Cite: 59 FR 17537
___________________________________________________________________________
FARM CREDIT ADMINISTRATION

[NV-94-05 (07-FEB-94)]

Policy Statement on Rules for Transaction of Business and Operational Responsibilities of the Farm Credit Administration Board


ACTION: Policy statement.

[*17537]

SUMMARY: On February 7, 1994, the Farm Credit Administration Board (Board) adopted a policy statement concerning rules for transaction of business and operational responsibilities of the Board. This [*17538] document consolidates in one location the substance of several separate documents. The Board Members wanted wide distribution of this document because of its importance in determining which matters should be brought to the Board Members' attention, the manner in which different matters should be brought to their attention, and the basic procedures for handling certain items.

EFFECTIVE DATE: February 7, 1994.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Curtis M. Anderson, Secretary to the Farm Credit Administration Board, Farm Credit Administration, McLean, Virginia 22102-5090, (703) 883-4003, TDD (703) 883-4444.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The text of the Board's policy statement concerning rules for transaction of business and operational responsibilities of the Board is set forth below in its entirety:

Policy Statement on Rules for Transaction of Business and Operational Responsibilities of the Farm Credit Administration Board

No. NV-94-05

FCA-PS-58

Effective Date: Upon adoption.

Effect on Previous Action: Supersedes, rescinds, and replaces the following:

FCA-PS-32 [BM-13-DEC-90-04]; FCA-PS-33 [BM-13-JUN-91-04]; FCA-PS-36 [BM-13-FEB-92-04]; FCA-PS-40; [BM-28-APR-92-05]; FCA-PS-42 [NV-92-24 (10-JUL-92)]; FCA-PS-45 [BM-14-JAN-93-03]; FCA-PS-46 [BM-29-JAN-93-01]; FCA-PS-47 [NV-93-08 (04-FEB-93)]; FCA-PS-52 NV-93-44 (08-JUL-93)]; FCA-PS-55 [NV-93-66 (30-NOV-93)]; FCA-PS-54 [NV-93-58 (16-SEP-93)]; FCA ORDER NO. 870 (04-NOV-86); FCA ORDER NO. 879 (26-OCT-87); FCA ORDER NO. 911 (28-OCT-92).

Source of Authority: The Farm Credit Act of 1971, as amended, including Sections 5.8 (c), (d), 5.9, 5.14, and 5.19; 12 U.S.C. 2001 et seq., 2242 (c), (d), 2243, 2249, and 2254.

Article I

Purpose and Table of Contents

Section 1. Purpose

These Rules for the Transaction of Business ("Rules") of the Farm Credit Administration ("FCA") Board ("Board") are adopted by the Board to supplement the statutes and regulations which govern the procedures and practice of the Board (see The Farm Credit Act of 1971, as amended, and 12 CFR Part 600 et seq.), and shall constitute the official rules of the Board for purposes of section 5.8(c) of the Farm Credit Act of 1971, as amended.

Section 2. Table of Contents

Article I. Purpose and Table of Contents.

Article II. Board Organization.

Article III. Voting.

Article IV. Minutes.

Article V. Board Meetings.

Article VI. Public Appearances and Attendance.

Article VII. Board Operational Responsibilities.

Article VIII. Board Member Expenses and Related Compensation.

Article IX. Amendments.

Article II

Board Organization

Section 1. Secretary to the Board

The Chairman of the Board ("Chairman") shall appoint a Secretary to the Board ("Secretary") who shall be an employee of the FCA. The Secretary shall keep permanent and complete records and minutes of the acts and proceedings of the Board. The Secretary shall be the parliamentarian for the Board.

Section 2. General Counsel

The General Counsel of the FCA shall serve as the chief legal officer of the Board.

Section 3. Individual Assignments

To the extent consistent with law, the Board or the Chairman may offer individual Members of the Board ("Member(s)") special assignments and define the duties incident thereto, and the Chairman may delegate to individual Members certain duties and responsibilities of the Chairman.

Section 4. Two Vacancies/Authority to Act

In the event two (2) Members are not available by reason of resignation, temporary or permanent incapacitation, or death, to perform the duties of their offices, the Board hereby delegates to the remaining Member the authority to exercise, in his/her discretion, any and all authorities of the FCA granted to the Agency or the Board by statute, regulation or otherwise, except those authorities which are nondelegable. This delegation of authority does not include authority to establish general policy and promulgate rules and regulations, or any delegation expressly prohibited by statute. This delegation shall include, but shall not be limited to, the exercise of the following powers:

(a) The approval of any and all actions of the Farm Credit institutions as required by statute, regulations or otherwise to be approved by the FCA or its Board;

(b) The exercise of all powers of enforcement granted to the FCA by statute, including but not limited to, the authorities contained in 12 U.S.C. 2154, 2154a, 2183, 2202a, and 2261-2274; and

(c) Any actions or approvals required in connection with the conduct of a receivership or conservatorship of a Farm Credit institution.

Authorities delegated by this Section may be redelegated, in writing, at the discretion of the remaining Member, to other FCA officers or employees.

Section 5. National Security Emergencies

Pursuant to Executive Order 12656, in the event of a national security emergency, if the Chairman is unable to perform his or her duties for any reason, the following individuals, in the order mentioned and subject to being available, are authorized to exercise and perform all the functions, powers, authority and duties of the Office of Chairman:

(a) Member of the Board of the Chairman's party;

(b) Member of the Board of the Minority party;

(c) Executive Assistant and Senior Advisor to the Chairman;

(d) Director, Office of Congressional and Public Affairs;

(e) Secretary to the Board;

(f) Chief Operating Officer;

(g) General Counsel;

(h) Chief Examiner, Office of Examination;

(i) Regional Director, Western Region, Office of Examination.

The Chairman shall ensure that FCA has an alternative location for its headquarters functions in the event a national security emergency renders FCA's headquarters inoperative. The Chairman or Acting Chairman may establish such branch office or offices of the FCA as are necessary to coordinate its operations with those of other government agencies.

Article III

Voting

Section 1. Affirmative Vote Required

Action on any matter shall require the affirmative vote of at least two (2) Members, except as provided in Article II, Section 4.

Section 2. Votes To Be Recorded

The vote of each Member, including the Chairman, on a question shall be recorded in the minutes.

Section 3. Notational Voting

(a) Nothing in these Rules shall preclude the transaction of business by the circulation of written items ("notational votes") to the Members, [*17539] provided all Members participate, in writing, in the disposition of the item pursuant to Article III, section 3(c).

(b) Matters that may be decided by notational vote. The Board may consider any matter that comes before it by use of notational voting procedures; however, it is best used only for routine and noncontroversial items. Any Member may submit an item to the Secretary for distribution as a notational vote.

(c) Notational vote ballots and material. Upon submission of an item for notational vote, the Secretary shall provide each Member a complete package of all relevant information and a notational vote ballot sheet (indicating the Member making the motion, the substance of the motion, and the deadline for return of the vote) upon which each Member can indicate his/her position by voting in the following manner:

(1) To approve;

(2) To disapprove;

(3) To abstain; or

(4) Not appropriate for notational vote.

(d) Modifications, amendments, and withdrawals. No partial concurrences or amendments are appropriate; however, a Member may suggest a revision to the proponent, subject to compliance with the Government in the Sunshine Act, and the proponent may withdraw his motion at any time prior to receipt by the Secretary of the votes of all Members or the end of the time period provided for on the ballot sheet.

(e) Time limits to vote. Within ten (10) business days of receipt, or earlier if circumstances require, each Member shall act on the matter by returning the ballot sheet. Failure to return a ballot sheet by the date requested on the sheet will result in the vote being recorded as "not voting", which causes the motion to fail pursuant to Article III, section 3(a).

(f) Veto of notational voting procedure. In view of the public policy of openness reflected in the Government in the Sunshine Act and the desire to allow any Member to present viewpoints to the other Members, any Member can veto the use of the notational voting procedure for the consideration of any particular matter by voting "not appropriate for notational vote".

(g) Disclosure of results. A summary of any action taken by notational vote shall be provided by the Secretary to the Members, Chief Executive Officer, and Chief Operating Officer, and shall be reflected in the appropriate minutes of the Board. Public disclosure is determined by the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552).

(h) Authority to designate staff to initial. If the conduct of agency business so requires, and the Member has been apprised of the contents of any notational vote, a Member who is absent from the office may authorize a staff member to initial the item for him/her, as long as the Member has a designation memorandum on file with the Secretary.

Section 4. Telephone Conference

Any Member may participate in a meeting of the Board through the use of conference call telephone or similar equipment, provided that all persons participating in the meeting can simultaneously speak to and hear each other. Any Member so participating shall be deemed present at the meeting for all purposes.

Article IV

Minutes

Section 1. Format

The format of minutes of the Board Meetings, unless otherwise stated in these rules, or relevant statutes or regulations, shall comply with Robert's Rules of Order (Newly Revised) and the Government in the Sunshine Act.

(a) The minutes shall clearly identify the date, time, and place of the meeting, the type of meeting held, the identity of Members present, and where applicable that they participated by telephone, and the identity of the Secretary and the General Counsel present, or, in their absence, the names of the persons who substituted for them.

(b) The minutes shall contain a separate paragraph for each subject matter, and shall note all main motions or motions to bring a main motion before the assembly, except any that were withdrawn.

(c) The minutes shall not contain any reference to statements made unless a request is specifically made that a statement be made a part of the record, or if required by the Government in the Sunshine Act.

(d) The minutes of Regular Meetings shall indicate the substance and disposition of any notational votes completed since the last Regular Meeting of the Board.

(e) The vote of each Member on a question shall be recorded or the Secretary will note a unanimous consent.

(f) The minutes of the Board shall be signed by the Chairman and the Secretary, indicating the date of approval by the Board.

Section 2. Circulation

(a) Draft minutes shall be reviewed by the Chairman and General Counsel.

(b) Minutes shall be circulated to all Members one (1) week prior to their consideration at a Board Meeting.

(c) Copies of the minutes of the Meetings of the Board (Open Session) to be voted on at a Board Meeting shall be placed in all Board Briefing Books.

(d) Copies of the minutes of the Meetings of the Board (Closed Session) to be voted on at a Board Meeting shall be placed only in the Board Briefing Books of the Members, the Secretary, and the General Counsel.

Section 3. Supporting Documentation

(a) Board briefing books. One copy of all Board Briefing Book material shall be maintained by the Secretary. All other copies of the Board Briefing Book material for Closed Sessions shall be returned to the Secretary for disposal or maintained in a secure location approved by the Secretary.

(b) Executive summaries. One copy of each Executive Summary provided to any Member shall be provided to and maintained by the Secretary.

Article V

Board Meetings

Section 1. Presiding Officer

The Chairman shall preside at each meeting. In the event the Chairman is unavailable, the Member from the Chairman's political party shall preside.

Section 2. Order of Business

The agenda for each meeting shall be substantially in the following order:

I. Open Session

A. Approval of Minutes

B. Reports

C. Special Orders

D. Unfinished Business and General Orders

1. Policy Statements

2. Regulations

3. Other

E. New Business

1. Policy Statements

2. Regulations

3. Other

II. Closed Session

A. Reports

B. Special Orders

C. Unfinished Business and General Orders

D. New Business

III. Adjournment

Section 3. Calls and Agenda

(a) Regular meeting. The Secretary, at the direction of the Chairman, shall issue a call for items for the agenda to each Member, the Chief Operating Officer, and the Office Directors of FCA. The Secretary shall provide to the Chairman a list of all the items [*17540] submitted, including a list of outstanding notational votes and matters voted "not appropriate for notational vote"; the Chairman shall then establish the agenda to be published in the Federal Register.

(b) Special meeting. Special Meetings of the Board may be called:

(1) By the Chairman; or

(2) By any two Members; or

(3) If there is at the time a vacancy on the Board, by any Member.

Any call for a Special Meeting shall set forth the business to be transacted and shall state the place and time of such meeting. Except with the unanimous consent of all Members, no business shall be brought before a Special Meeting that has not been specified in the notice of call of such meeting.

(c) Notice. The Secretary shall give appropriate notice on any and all meetings and make the call for Special Meetings. Reasonable efforts to provide such notice to Members shall be made for all meetings of the Board, but failure of notice shall in no case invalidate a meeting.

Section 4. Board Materials

Complete Board Briefing Books shall be distributed to each member at least two (2) full business days prior to any regular meeting. Unless agreed to by all Members, no vote may be taken on an issue unless the necessary material has been provided to the Members not less than twenty-four (24) hours prior to the Board Meeting to consider such issue.

Section 5. Parliamentary Rules

Unless otherwise stated in these Rules, or relevant statutes or regulations, the meetings of this Board shall be conducted in accordance with Robert's Rules of Order (Newly Revised) (9th Edition).

Article VI

Public Appearances and Attendance

Section 1. Attendance

Members of the public may attend all meetings of the Board except those meetings or portions of meetings which are closed as directed by the Board, consistent with the Government in the Sunshine Act. Members of the public may speak or make presentations to the Board under the rules outlined under this article.

Section 2. Presentations to the Board

Members of the public may make a presentation to the Board only on the basis of a written request and statement covering the subject matter received at least five (5) days prior to the meeting, which is approved by a majority of the Board.

Section 3. Limitations

Public presentations may not conflict with the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act and other Board policies on the handling of public comments. In the event that a presentation is made concerning a regulation during the comment period, the presenter must submit a summary or a text of their comments to be filed along with other comments received.

Article VII

Board Operational Responsibilities

Section 1. General

The purpose of this article is to ensure the efficient operation of the Farm Credit Administration (FCA), the FCA Board (Board), and the Chief Executive Officer of the FCA (CEO) concerning operational responsibilities. This rule shall, by itself, neither preclude the CEO from bringing to the Board issues on which this rule does not require Board action, nor preclude the Board from involving itself in matters not addressed herein. The Board might, for example, be involved in operational matters that become, in the Board's view, policy matters as a result of special congressional attention.

Section 2. Documents and Communications

(a) CEO responsibilities. The CEO is responsible for ensuring the accomplishment of the goals set by the Board within the constraints imposed by statue, regulation, Board policy, precedents, sound management practices, and budget resource limitations. The CEO will ensure effective and efficient mechanisms that accomplish the desired goals. Those mechanisms include the development of specific objectives, action plans, budgets, procedures, administrative policies, communications with Farm Credit institution employees and directors, and other activities as needed. Proposed actions that are inconsistent with existing Board policy require Board approval. It is understood that a substantial part of the CEO's and staff's jobs requires the exercise of sound judgement in applying statutory, regulatory, Board policy, and precedential guidance to specific situations, and in most cases the Board does not expect to take part in applying existing guidance to specific situations. There may be situations where an interpretation of existing guidance would constitute the formulation of policy; the CEO should refer such interpretations to the Board.

(b) Approval, review, and consultation. The FCA Board is responsible for determining the agency's position on policy matters affecting the agency's mission. The FCA Board typically expresses its position through the approval of regulations and Board Policy Statements that define the goal(s) to be accomplished. Board Policy Statements and Bookletters should be reviewed at least every five (5) years.

Proposed and final FCA regulations, Board actions, and minutes of Board meetings must be approved by the Board. The promulgation of regulations adopted by the Board shall be in compliance with the requirements of the Farm Credit Act of 1971, as amended, and the Administrative Procedure Act. Federal Register notices must be approved by the Board, except for announcements and notices that merely make public prior actions that have been taken by the Board. The following are examples of Federal Register notices that need not be approved by the Board: Notices concerning effective dates or technical corrections of regulations, notices of meetings or hearings, notices publishing Board Orders and Policy Statements, and notices informing the public of the amendment or cancellation of Farm Credit institution charters.

Bookletters, memoranda, bulletins, and other mass mailings to Farm Credit institutions (except documents listed in Attachment A) must be reviewed by the Board prior to distribution. Documents may be added to or deleted from Attachment A by Board vote.

The issuance of a "no action" letter is a policy matter requiring Board approval. For the purposes of this statement, a "no action" letter is a statement to a Farm Credit institution that, notwithstanding any other provision of law or regulation, the Board will take no action against the institution solely because it engaged in conduct specified in the letter.

Authority to promulgate internal administrative issuances, including FCA Policies and Procedures Manual (PPM) issuances, rests with the Chairman as CEO and may be delegated to the Chief Operating Officer. The CEO shall provide the Board with final drafts of PPM issuances and other administrative issuances for an appropriate consultative period if those issuances relate to examination and supervision, audits, internal controls, the budget, the strategic planning process, regulation development, or personnel matters relating strictly to promotion or pay.

(c) Signature authority. Authority to sign official Board documents, [*17541] including, but not limited to, proposed and final regulations, Federal Register notices, Board actions, no-action letters, and minutes is delegated to the Secretary to the Board (Secretary). Documents executed by the Secretary or an alternate will be signed under the caption "By Order of the Board" and reflect the title of "Secretary of the Board," or "Acting Secretary of the Board" as appropriate. The Chairman has the authority to sign bookletters, memoranda, bulletins, and other mass mailings to Farm Credit Institutions, and such authority will not be delegated to others (except for documents listed in Attachment A).

(d) Correspondence. The Chairman shall, as required by section 5.10(a)(3) of the Farm Credit Act of 1971 (Act), approve and sign correspondence to Members of Congress, correspondence responding to White House referrals, or other correspondence on behalf of the Board or the agency. The Chairman may delegate approval and signature authority for such correspondence to FCA Office Directors when the subject matter involves congressional or White House case work. When the subject matter involves the presentation of an agency position or policy relative to regulations, legislation, etc., the Chairman may not delegate authority, and the correspondence must be approved by the Board, except that the Board need not approve a previously approved response or a restatement of previously adopted Board policy. Board approval does not apply when the Chairman is speaking only for him or herself and includes the appropriate disclaimer. Likewise, on similar matters, Board Members should include appropriate disclaimers. The Chairman or the Chairman's designee has authority to sign acknowledgements or interim responses without Board approval, provided such responses contain no policy statements or only previously approved statements.

(e) Authentication and certification of records and documents. The Chairman shall designate who is authorized and empowered to execute and issue under the seal of the FCA, statements authenticating copies of, or excerpts from, official records and files of the FCA; and to certify, on the basis of the records of the FCA, the effective periods of regulations, orders, instructions, and regulatory announcements; and to certify, on the basis of the records of the FCA, the appointment, qualification, and continuance in office of any officer or employee of the FCA, or any conservator or receiver acting under the direction of the FCA. The designated official(s) may be further empowered to sign official documents and to affix the seal of the FCA thereon for the purpose of attesting the signature of officials of the FCA.

Section 3. Financial and Strategic Management

(a) Budget approval. The CEO shall, consistent with the provisions of the Act, other law and regulations, and applicable policy, oversee the development of budget proposals and cause the expenditure of funds within approved budgets to meet the agency's mission and objectives. The Board will approve an object class budget for the agency as a whole and a budget for each office. Any change to the object class budget for the agency as a whole will be approved by the Board. However, reallocation of funds between object classes within an office that has a de minimis effect (less than 2%) on the agency total for the object class need not be approved by the Board.

(b) Procurement. The CEO has the authority, consistent with FCA and federal policies and practices, to purchase or negotiate to purchase necessary services and/or materials for the operations of the agency. The Board shall exercise its authority to approve procurements through its approval of the budget. The objectives of single procurements in excess of $ 100,000 shall be made clear in conjunction with the budget approval process. For procurements outside of the Budget approval process, the Board shall approve expenditures and statements of work for amounts in excess of $ 100,000.

(c) Strategic planning. The Board has authority for the oversight and approval of strategic planning, including budgetary and regulatory planning, and will exercise its involvement in these areas via the Strategic Planning Committee (Committee). The Committee will consist of the Board Members' Executive Assistants, the Chairman's Executive Assistant, and the Chief Operating Officer. The Committee shall be coordinated by the Chief Operating Officer. The Committee shall make periodic reports to the Board regarding its activities.

(d) Information resources. To ensure a reasonable return of efficiency and effectiveness given the costs of the investment, information and information resources will be managed to assure that the agency collects and disseminates the information necessary to the effective discharge of the agency's mission; that information activities reflect the goals and priorities in the agency's strategic and operational plans; and that investment decision in information resources be made on a life-cycle basis so that overall costs and benefits are weighed rather than simply the initial costs and benefits.

To ensure this objective, oversight of major automation purchases, projects, and policies at FCA will be overseen by an IRM Steering Committee of senior officials to provide oversight, review, and validation of IRM initiatives. The committee will consist of the Chief Operating Officer, and the Office Directors of the Offices of Examination, Special Supervision and Corporate Affairs, Resources Management and General Counsel, one rotating member chose from the other FCA offices and the Chief of the Information Resources Division. The COO shall chair the committee.

Section 4. Human Resources

The CEO has authority, consistent with the Act, FCA policy and budget, and federal personnel rules to hire the personnel necessary to carry out the objectives of the agency. Each Board Member is entitled to appoint staff within the constraints of the adopted budget for the Office of the Board. Consistent with the Act, the Board shall approve the appointment of the "heads of major administrative divisions," which the Board interprets to mean the Chief Operating Officer and career Office Directors. The Chairman has authority to appoint the Secretary and noncareer (political) Office Directors but does so with the understanding that all Agency representations by such staff are on behalf of the Board.

(a) Organization chart. Consistent with its mandate to approve regulations and the appointments outlined above, the Board shall approve the FCA organizational chart down to the Office level along with relevant functional statements for each Office. Authority to make organizational changes within any Division shall rest with the CEO, and may be delegated to the COO or Office Directors.

(b) Chief Operating Officer (COO). The COO shall report to the Chairman as CEO regarding all matters established to be CEO responsibilities as listed in this Policy Statement, including such administrative items as approval of leave, etc. The COO shall report to the Board regarding matters on which it has retained responsibility. The same shall be said for the Secretary and the Director of the Office of Congressional and Public Affairs.

(c) Inspector General (IG). The IG shall report to the Chairman as CEO and agency head. The CEO shall be responsible for overseeing the audit resolution process. However, the CEO must obtain Board approval of [*17542] resolutions where the issue would normally require Board action. The CEO (through his/her designee) shall be responsible for implementation and audit follow-up. The Chairman will provide a briefing in the appropriate setting for the Board on the Inspector General's Semi-Annual Report to Congress within ten (10) working days of the Chairman's transmittal of the Report to Congress. The Chairman will ask the IG and Audit Follow-up Official to discuss the status of any unresolved audit recommendations, unimplemented management decisions, and other issues identified in the Semi-Annual Report. Consistent with its budgetary responsibility, the Board must approve all audit resolutions that result in a cumulative cost to the Agency in excess of $ 25,000 per audit. This requirement applies to audits commenced after May 1, 1993.

(d) Director, Office of Secondary Market Oversight. The Director shall report to the FCA Board regarding general policy and rulemaking issues and to the FCA Chairman as CEO relating to administrative activities of the Office.

(e) General Counsel. The General Counsel shall report to the Chief Operating Officer concerning administrative matters and to the Board regarding matters of agency policy. Additionally, the General Counsel, by the nature of the position, shall, as appropriate, maintain special advisory relationships in confidence as necessary with individual Board members. The General Counsel shall keep the Board fully informed of all litigation where the Agency is involved.

(f) Performance appraisals. Each Board member is responsible for appraising the performance of his or her staff. The Chairman, after consultation with the other Board members, is responsible for the appraisal of the performance of the Secretary to the Board. The Chairman as CEO, after consultation with the other Board members, is responsible for appraising the performance of the COO, the Inspector General, the Director of OCPA, the Director of OSMO, and the EEO Officer. The COO is responsible for appraising the performance of the career Office Directors and other staff that report directly to him or her. The CEO, in consultation with the other Board members, is responsible for reviewing the performance appraisals conducted by the COO. All performance appraisals will be conducted in accordance with the procedures set forth in the agency's PPM.

Section 5. Litigation

The CEO has authority to undertake litigation to defend the agency, consistent with established Board policy. The Board will approve litigation where the agency is plaintiff, will approve recommendations to the Justice Department to pursue an appeal, and will approve positions advanced in litigation that conflict with existing Board policy or establish a significant new policy.

Section 6. Examinations

Consistent with the Act, the Board shall adopt an annual Schedule of Examination and approve the policy scope of examination. The Chief Examiner shall report quarterly to the Board on the status of implementing the schedule and other information associated with the execution of OE's strategic plan. Included in that report shall be a discussion of general trends and significant examination issues and concerns. This report may be given in conjunction with the quarterly review of System performance.

Article VIII

Board Member and Related Expenses

Section 1. Pre-Confirmation Travel

Travel expenses incurred by an FCA Board nominee that are solely for the purpose of attending his or her Senate confirmation hearings will be considered personal expense of the nominee and will not be reimbursed by FCA. However, consistent with existing General Accounting Office interpretations, the FCA will pay for a nominee's travel expenses to the Washington, DC metropolitan area (including lodging and subsistence), if payment is approved, in advance whenever practicable, by the Chairman or Acting Chairman based on a determination that the nominee's travel is related to official business that will result in a substantial benefit to the FCA. That determination will be made on a case-by-case basis and is within the sole discretion of the Chairman or Acting Chairman. The same standards and policies that apply to the reimbursement of Board members' travel expenses will apply to the reimbursement of nominee's expenses. As part of the documentation for the approval process, the Chairman or Acting Chairman must execute a written finding that a nominee's travel would substantially benefit the FCA.

Travel that may result in substantial benefit to the FCA could include meetings, briefings, conferences, or other similar encounters between the nominee and FCA Board members, office directors, other senior agency officials, or other senior congressional and executive branch officials, for the purpose of developing substantive knowledge about the FCA, its role, its interaction with other Government entities, or the institutions that it regulates. Meetings or briefings of this nature may enable a nominee to more quickly and effectively assume leadership of the agency after confirmation by the Senate and could thus substantially benefit the agency.

Section 2. Board Member Relocation

Board members will be reimbursed by FCA for travel and transportation expenses incurred in connection with relocation to their first official duty station. Expenses for which reimbursement will be allowed generally include, but are not limited to the following:

(a) Travel and per diem for the Board member;

(b) Travel, but not per diem for immediate family of the Board member;

(c) Mileage if privately owned vehicle is used in travel; and

(d) Transportation and temporary storage of household goods.

Each relocation will be considered separately and all rates and allowances will be determined at the time of authorization, notwithstanding the limitations of 5 U.S.C., Chapter 57 and the Federal Travel Regulations. Reimbursement of additional expenses may be authorized if warranted by specific circumstances. Board members will be issued a specific prior written authorization by the Chief of the Human Resources Division detailing the expenses that may be reimbursed and will be required to execute a one year service agreement.

Section 3. Representation and Reception

The Farm Credit Act of 1971, as amended, authorizes the expenditure of Farm Credit Administration (FCA) funds for official representation and reception expenses. Expenditures of funds for official representation and reception expenses shall not exceed any statutory limitation placed on the expenditure of such funds. Additionally, use of the representation and reception fund is discretionary and the Board may determine in any fiscal year that it will spend no funds for official representation and reception activities. Furthermore, the official representation and reception fund shall be a fund of last resort and shall not be used for expenditures that can properly be classified as another type of agency expenditure. [*17543]

All expenditures of funds for official representation and reception expenses shall be in accordance with the guidelines contained in this rule. Furthermore, all such expenditures shall be consistent with the decisions of the Comptroller General of the United States pertaining to official representation and reception expenses, except that no expenditure of representation and reception funds shall be made for paying expenses of FCA or other Federal Government employees at any official representation and reception function.

Official functions falling within the representation and reception fund category would be activities of the FCA Board or of individual members of the Board, acting in their official capacity as representatives of the FCA, that involve extending official courtesies to public and foreign dignitaries on occasions associated with the mission of FCA. Expenses for such activities could include, for example:

Food and beverages, either formal meals, snacks or refreshments; receptions; banquets; catering services; tips and gratuities; invitations; rental of facilities and incidental equipment; and supplies and services that are incurred in hosting such functions.

Typical examples of proper expenditures of FCA representation and reception funds include:

(a) The FCA Board hosting an FCA-sponsored reception for non-Government personnel, e.g., presidents and chief executive officers of Farm Credit System associations; or

(b) A Board member hosting and paying for the lunch of a representative of the Farm Credit Council when the purpose of the lunch is to discuss Farm Credit business.

No expenditure of representation and reception funds may be made for activities relating solely to personal entertainment, such as attendance at a sporting event or a concert or for expenditures generally regarded as personal obligations.

Before expenditures for official representation and reception expenses are made by the FCA Board or individual members of the Board, approval shall be obtained from the Chairman of the Board. FCA-006 form, "Official Representation and Reception Expense," shall be submitted, through the Secretary to the Board, to the Chairman for approval. After approval by the Chairman, the Secretary to the Board will submit the request to the FCA Certifying Official for final approval. If circumstances necessitate expenditures for official representation and reception expenses without prior approval by the chairman, form FCA-006 shall be submitted, through the Secretary to the Board, to the Chairman with an attached explanation of why prior approval could not be obtained. If the expenditure is not approved by the Chairman or the FCA Certifying Official, the party making the expenditure will be responsible for all costs associated with the expenditure.

Article IX

Amendments

Section 1

The business of the Board shall be transacted in accordance with these Rules as the same may be amended from time to time: Provided, however, that upon agreement of at least two (2) Members convened in a duly called meeting, the Rules may be waived in any particular instance, except that action may be taken on items at a Special Meeting only in accordance with Article V, Section 3(b), hereof.

Section 2

These Rules may be changed or amended by the concurring vote of at least two (2) Members upon notice of the proposed change or amendment's having been given at least thirty (30) days before such vote.

Attachment A

Documents Which Are Mailed in Mass to Farm Credit Institutions Which Do Not Have To Be Reviewed by the FCA Board Prior to Distribution

1. Call for Reports of Financial Condition and Performance and Loan Account Reporting System Data for the Quarter Ending __________.

2. Regulation handbook updates, including Federal Register tearsheets for FCA Handbook mailings.

3. PPM mailings.

4. Vacancy Announcements below the Division Director level.

5. Interpretations of accounting pronouncements applicable to the Uniform Call Report Instructions.

6. Young, Beginning and Small Farmer reports.

7. Budget data for the Banks of the Farm Credit System that is prepared for the Office of Management and Budget.

8. Changes to FCA Examination Manual.

9. Information Systems Bulletins.

10. Changes to Loan Account Reporting System and Uniform Call Report requirements and related instructions.

11. Office of Inspector General mailings for official audit purposes.

Adopted this 7th day of February, 1994.

By Order of the Board.

Dated: April 7, 1994.

Curtis M. Anderson,

Secretary, Farm Credit Administration Board.

[FR Doc. 94-8905 Filed 4-12-94; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6705-01-P-M